Health & Senior Resources

Below is a list of websites and non-profits at the local and state level that may be of benefit to Cavendish, Vermont residents, as well as others. 

General Information

Vermont 211 | Ph. 2.1.1
Information and referral service helpline for Vermont

Call or text in the event of an emergency

Poison Control | Ph. 800-222-1222 

Elder Care & Disability Services

Association for the Blind & Visually Impaired | Ph. 802-775-6452 

Association for the Deaf | Ph. 802-787-1449

Black River Valley Senior Center | Ph. 802-228-7421

Center for Independent Living | Ph. 800-639-1522 

Choices for Care | Ph. 802-871-3067
Medicaid program which reimburses in-home caregivers for seniors & people with disabilities   

Department of Disability, Aging and Independent Living 

Get at Stuff Assistive Technology Exchange
Matches assistive technology devices that are no longer being used with those who could use them

Gill Odd Fellows Home | Ph. 802- 228-4571
Nursing home in Ludlow

Gill Terrace Retirement Apartments | Ph. 802-228-3200
Affordable apartments for seniors or those disabled in Ludlow in proximity to the Gill Home.

Lifeline | Ph. 1-800-287-0589
Provides eligible Vermonters with a credit to go towards their home phone bill

Unused meds & over the counter drugs can be dropped off at the Ludlow Police Dept. from 9-4, 7 days a week.

Rewarding Work
Find a Personal Care Assistant (Direct Care)

Senior Solutions | Ph. 802-885-2655
One of five Area Agencies on Aging in Vermont. A non-profit community organization providing Older Americans Act social services to Vermonters 60 years and older, their caregivers and families for over 30 years. Located in Springfield, VT.

Telecare | Ph. 802-885-2083
Free phone reassurance, check-in and friendly phone calls


Ludlow Health Center | Ph. 802-228-8867 
Offers family medicine. Walk-in care is offered seven days a week, with no appointment necessary; and free blood pressure checks are always available as needed. Local transportation to the office is available if needed. 

Springfield Hospital
Fifteen miles from Cavendish. Provides 24-hour emergency care. 

Rutland Regional Medical Center | Ph. 802-775-7111
Thirty miles from Cavendish. Provides 24-hour emergency care.

Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center | Ph. 603-650-5000 
Forty miles from Cavendish. Closest tertiary hospital, located in W. Lebanon, NH. Includes a level 1 Trauma Center, a National Cancer Institute designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, Children’s hospital, academic medical center and affiliated with the Mayo Clinic.  

Visiting Nurse and Hospice of VT and NH | Ph. 800-575-5162   

Other Local Health Providers

Chronic Conditions Information Network | Ph. 802-226-7807 | Email:   
Home of the blog "Healing Whole"

Four Seasons Chiropractic | Ph. 802-226-7977

Julia Gignoux | Ph. 802-484-5435 | E-mail:
Reiki master teacher & healing practitioner

Deborah Harrison | 802-226-7900
Mental health counseling services for individuals, families and couples. LICSW (Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker).

Mercury Ripley | Ph. 802-226-7888 | E-mail:
Mental health counseling. 2091 Main Street, Cavendish.

Social Services

Black River Good Neighbors (BRGN) | Ph. 802-228-3663 
Provides free, confidential help to financially distressed individuals and families to facilitate their navigation of the often intricate pathways to locate assistance. Focus primarily on distributing free food and providing rent, fuel and other aid for those who meet our guidelines. Operates thrift and furniture stores in Ludlow. 

SEVCA (Southeastern Vermont Community Action) | Ph. 800-464-9951 
A Community Action Agency, provides assistance with weatherization, housing, home repair, economic development etc. Located in Springfield.

Windham & Windsor Housing Trust
Affordable housing 

Support Groups

Support groups are very helpful to people affected by various health issues.  Places to find a support group include: local newspaper; clinic or doctor’s office where you receive care; condition specific organizations; asking friends and family; your place of worship; or library. Find friends and places that can support you emotionally, and where it is safe to talk about your health issues. Be sure to consider AA, Al-Anon, church group, or even a social club. For more information > 

Alcoholics Anonymous for Greater Springfield Area 


Share Pregnancy & Infant Loss Support  | Ph. 802-226-7231 or crisis line 802-738-3411

Support Groups at the Springfield Hospital
Includes groups for caregiving, tobacco cessation, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and breast cancer.

Getting What You Need - A Checklist

Planning ahead is important for both you and your family’s present and future. Luckily, there are many resources out there to help those struggling with chronic conditions, illness, or general aging. 

Legal Considerations

The following are things one should consider having prepared in advance:

  • a will
  • living will (advanced directives)
  • durable power of attorney (makes financial & legal decisions for you if you are unable to do so)
  • durable power of health attorney (makes health care decisions for you if you are unable to do  so)
  • legal guardian (who would care for your child or other dependent adult if you were unable to do so)

It is best that you work with a lawyer in completing the necessary paper work. There is a Legal Aid office in Springfield (Ph. 885-5181 or 800-889-2047). 

Resources: Vermont Legal Health Forms 

Case Managers

Case Manager for Medical Issues: A case manager is someone who can help you monitor your care. You can learn more about medical case management from your doctor or clinic; the social work department where you receive your medical care; or a condition specific organization.

Case Manager for Social Needs: A case manager can help you with such issues as housing, transportation, finances and completing forms. The following organizations offer case management services in the area:

  • VT Center for Independent Living | Ph. 800-639-1522
  • Senior Solutions | Ph. 885-2655
  • Visiting Nurses Association | Ph. 800-575-5162
  • Condition specific organization (e.g. Cancer Society)
  • Social work department at the hospital or clinic where you receive your care

Note: Your case manager for social and medical needs can be the same person. If you are already enrolled with Senior Solutions, Visiting Nurses Association, or have Medicaid, you have a case manager. Know who they are. 

Personal Health Notebook: It is important to keep a health notebook about the care you are receiving as it helps to monitor trends, allows you to share information with other providers, helps to reduce errors at medical appointments, when your chart may not be available, and can be a resource in making important health decisions. There are a variety of free on-line e-health tools you can use. For more information >

Organizing Help

Lotsa Helping Hands is a free private, web-based caregiving coordination service that allows family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues to create a community to assist a family caregiver with the daily tasks that become a challenge during times of medical crisis, caregiver exhaustion, or when caring for an elderly parent. If you are going to be needing help for any length of time, this is an excellent way to organize help and support. It’s the right answer to the common question, “What can I do to help?” 

Shared/Informed Decision Making 

There are programs that can help you with the process of making a health care decision. Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH has a program 603-650-5578. “Hard Choices for Loving People”  is an excellent booklet resource to help when you are needing to make choices for other people. Ordering information and free download of the booklet is available at Hard Choices. Foundation for Informed Medical Decision Making also provides tools and resources.

Health Insurance Forms and Policies Help

Vermont: The Office of Health Care Ombudsman
Ph. 1-800-917-7787, (802) 863-2316, or (888) 884-1955 (V/TTY)

Medicare Help in Vermont | Ph.802-885-2655
If you are disabled and/or 65 or older, you qualify for Medicare

Paying for Healthcare

If you are having difficulties paying for your health care, Vermont has a number of programs to assist those who can not afford health insurance, including:

Green Mountain Care | Ph. 1-800-250-8427 
Includes state insurance programs, Medicaid and Dr. Dynasaur

Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Programs (Ladies First) | Ph. 800-508-2222 

Veteran Programs | Ph. 1-877-222-VETS (8387)

Free Clinics

Valley Health Connections (Springfield) | Ph. 885-1616
Red Logan Dental Clinic (White River Junction) | Ph. 802-295-1868

Paying for Medications

Partnership for Prescription Assistance Vermont (PPARxT) has developed a website to help low income, uninsured Vermont residents get access to patient assistance programs where they may qualify for free or nearly free prescription medicines. You can also call 888-477-2669.

Please dispose of unused medications properly: Ludlow Police Dept. has a free drop box that will take pills, capsules etc. Open, 7 days a week from 9 a.m.-4p.m. They do not take liquids, needles, or aerosols.

Non Medical Needs

There are many indirect costs of living with a chronic condition, such as transportation, housing, childcare, home maker services etc. There are a wide array of community  services that can be of help to you. Be aware that even if you qualify for a particular service, because of funding issues, the service may still not be available. It is important to develop a good support network to assist you. 

Places to consider:

  • SEVCA (Springfield) | Ph. 885-6153
  • Senior Solutions, if you are 65 or older | Ph. 885-2655
  • Social services department of the hospital or clinic where you are receiving your care
  • Vermont Center for Independent Living Center | Ph. 800-639-1522
  • Civic organizations, such as Rotary, Lions club
  • Churches
  • Schools - Cavendish Elementary School’s RESPECT Club (Ph. 226-7758) and Green Mountain Union High School (Ph. 875-2146) both offer student power to assist with yard work and home chores.

Disability Benefits and Other Benefits

There are a variety of programs, which you may be eligible. They will involve filling out forms. Case managers, social workers and organizations like the Senior Solutions or SEVCA may be able to help you with this activity.

With the exception of Workers Compensation, information and forms for the following programs can be obtained by calling 800-772-1213 or (TTY) 800-325-0778 or going on-line to the Social Security Administration website.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI): A Federal income supplement program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes),  designed to help aged, blind, and disabled people, who have little or no income. It provides cash to meet basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI): Must have worked in a job that was covered by Social Security; meet Social Security’s definition of disability; and be totally disabled and unable to work.

Social Security Retirement: Best to call three months before eligibility for funds to begin.

Social Security Survivors: If a parent or spouse dies, you may be eligible for benefits.

Short-term disability benefits: Designed to provide a paycheck to employees during periods of serious illness resulting in total disability, many companies offer optional long-term disability insurance (often paid by the employee). Short-term disability insurance covers the employee during the "gap" between the two insurance policies. Check with your employer, human resources, to learn if you are eligible for short term disability.

Workers Compensation: A program that provides replacement income and medical expenses to employees who are injured or become ill due to their jobs. Financial benefits may also extend to workers' dependents and to the survivors of workers who are killed on the job. You will need to check with your employer, human resources,  about such benefits.

Life settlements, Viaticals and Reverse Mortgages:

If you have a life insurance policy, you can consider these options. Be cautious about such activities and check with a financial advisor before doing so.

Life Settlements allows policy owners to cash out of unwanted, unaffordable or obsolete life insurance policies insuring a senior over age 65. 

Viatical Settlements enable someone facing a terminal illness to utilize the present day value of their life insurance policy to ease the financial burdens that can be caused by the high costs of medical care.

A Reverse Mortgage is a loan against your home that you do not have to pay back for as long as you live there. 

End of Life Care

Hospice Care is usually provided at home with the help of a visiting nurse and is usually time limited, six months or less. You can not be in active treatment and have hospice. Talk to your care provider for a referral. Inpatient hospice is available at Mt. Ascutney Hospital.

Palliative Care provides focused care to improve overall quality of life. This approach offers relief from pain and other symptoms, such as fatigue, nausea, loss of appetite, shortness of breath, and/or anxiety. It is not time limited and can be provided at any stage of the illness. Ask about services at the treating hospital or talk to your care provider.

Funeral Consumers Alliance is a non-profit organization, dedicated to protecting a consumer’s right to choose a meaningful, dignified affordable funeral.  802-223-8140 

Work Related

Consider the following:

  • If you are no longer able to work, consider filing for disability.
  • If you would like to return to work, but are afraid of losing benefits, contact Vermont’s Benefit’s to Work Program through Vermont Center for Independent Living (Ph. 800-639-1522) or Vermont Vocational Rehabilitation Program (Ph. 866-879-6757 (Voice/TTY) or (Ph. 802-241-1455 (TTY Next Talk) for assistance.
  • If you would like to return to work, but are no longer able to do your old job, and/or you’ve never worked but would like to do so, contact Vermont’s Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program 866-879-6757 (Voice/TTY) or 802-241-1455 (TTY Next Talk) . VR can help you find a job, keep a job as well as  train you for a new career.